When I first started my sales career, I thought learning how to sell was some extremely complex skill that only a few people had mastered.
And while there is some truth to that statement, the reality is that learning how to sell isn’t actually that hard.
But if you had told me that at the time I wouldn’t have believed you.
I had built sales up to be this mythical ability that only a few extremely clever people had acquired. It never occurred to me that faith-based selling was a thing.
Sure, there are some things that you need to learn in order to be an effective salesperson. You need to learn how to overcome objections and close in order to make a sale, but those things are not so much skill based as they are desire-based.
But what if I told you that the desire to sell and the skill of selling weren’t the only two important things that a salesperson needs to have a successful sales career?
In order to be a top salesperson, you need to develop the ability to have faith.
And yes, faith is an ability.
How I discovered faith-based selling
I remember when I started a new sales job selling hair straighteners in a mall in Harrisburg, Pennsylvania.
It was my first day and I was very nervous. While it wasn’t technically my actual FIRST sales job, it was the first one I stuck with long enough to be successful.
Previously, I’d taken a job selling skin care products in a mall but ended up quitting after a month. It was not a fun month.
There is nothing worse than working in a sales job when you’re not selling and you don’t know why.
Especially when you’re in the middle of the mall, on your feet, and everyone can see how much you’re hating life because you’re not selling.
In my mind, there was a lot riding on the line when I started this job. I had switched to the company that my girlfriend was working at and didn’t want to crash and burn like I had with the previous job.
To make matters worse, not only did I not really know the pitch, but I didn’t even know how to properly demo the products.
But something someone had told me stuck in my mind.
There are lot of Israelis who do this job and many of them have terrible English. Many don’t even know any English.
But they are still incredible salespeople.
Why? Because they never give up. They are committed to winning.
They have KILLER INSTINCT.
I was talking with another salesperson about these types and I’ll never forget what she told me:
“They don’t know anything about the products either. All they say is, ‘This is the best! It’s amazing! You’re gonna love it!’ And they sell.”
How I made faith-based selling work for me
I figured I didn’t have much to lose by trying that strategy.
That day I sold $500 worth of products. Not a killer day by any means, but for someone’s first day it was incredible.
Sure, I might have had some help from the manager to close a sale or two. But I did sell a few on my own as well.
As the days went on, I would always get nervous as we started to pull up to the mall. Performance anxiety started to kick in and I wondered how I would manage to make miracles happen – again.
But a funny thing happened.
I made sales every single day that I worked. And so did everyone else.
More and more days passed and I couldn’t believe how much people were selling.
There we were, stopping people in malls – some of who were actively avoiding us – and selling them products that they didn’t even know existed.
They had never heard of us, our brand, our products, or were even in the market for them. Yet they still bought.
I couldn’t believe it was actually happening.
Was this the magic of sales?
Weeks turned into months and still the miracles kept happening. More and more sales every day, sometimes even in malls with barely any foot traffic.
I remember working in a mall in York, Pennsylvania that had 4-5 people walk by our kiosk per hour until around 1 PM.
That’s 1 person every 15 minutes. Not exactly a busy mall.
But we still managed to sell products there. Sometimes even more than other malls.
You don’t need to understand faith-based selling for it to work for you
After witnessing this phenomenon over and over again I realized that I would never actually be able to logically understand it.
No matter how I tried to wrap my mind around it, it just didn’t make sense to me.
- Why were these people buying?
- How were they so loose with their money?
- Why did they say yes?
- Why did they even STOP at the kiosk?
- Weren’t they busy?
- Didn’t they have things to do?
- Didn’t they have anything better to spend their money on?
Answering one or two of these questions might have been simple. But all of them?
Now of course, there are easy customers in every business. But to find them every day at the mall when they just happen to walk by the exact physical location you’re standing in?
It felt like too much to attribute to pure chance alone.
Eventually I stopped trying to make sense of it and just chalked it up to pure faith.
- Do you need to understand how a car works in order to drive?
- Do you need to understand how a plane works in order to fly?
- Do you need to understand how your lungs work in order to breathe?
From then on, every time we pulled up to the mall and the anxiety started to kick in, I would just remind myself of the miracles that were bound to happen that day.
The principles of faith (not religion) can improve your sales
Despite the fact that we were unknowns in our industry, had a bad reputation as “those kiosk people,” and were clearly overcharging our customers in preparation for a ruthless round of haggling, we still made sales.
I couldn’t explain in then and I still really can’t explain it now, despite the fat that I first realized this nearly a decade ago.
But at the end of the day, do we really need to explain it?
Isn’t it enough to just have faith?
Isn’t it enough to just believe that no matter what industry we’re in, no matter what product we’re selling, who we are or what our reputation is, that there are people out there who are willing to voluntarily give us money in exchange for a product or service?
Isn’t that so much easier than trying to reason everything out?
I’ve never been a religious person, but once I understood the power of faith, I began to understand why religion was so attractive.
You don’t have to make sense of the world anymore. All you have to do is just believe that certain things will happen and it calms you down.
And when you’re calm, you’re able to work more effectively on the things that actually matter.
Faith isn’t an option – it’s mandatory for success
Regardless of what you’re doing, whether it’s trying to make sales or something else, in order for you to achieve it, you must believe that it’s possible.
If you want to even have a CHANCE of making it – that belief is necessary.
It’s not going to happen on accident.
And you’re not going to magically perform all of the work involved, overcome all the obstacles, and get struck by lightning 1000 times in a row on the way to getting what you want.
You need to have faith that what you want is going to happen. Even if it doesn’t make any sense.
But the beauty of this is that once you realize that all you need is faith, you can consciously choose to believe in whatever you want.
- Want a Lamborghini? Just believe that it will happen.
- Want to find the partner of your dreams? Just have pure faith that you will find them.
- Want to make a million dollars? Just use the power of belief and it will come true.
It sounds wishy-washy and probably uncharacteristic of me to say this. But what is true in one area is true in all areas.
If you think about it, the reason we don’t have what we claim to want in a certain area is because we don’t believe that it’s possible.
And the reason we do have what we want in a certain area is because we believe that it is possible.
So instead of trying to reinvent the wheel, just start at the end and work backwards: BELIEVE that what you want is possible.
Have FAITH that it will happen.
Don’t start with questions like:
- How will I make this happen?
- How can I do this?
- Am I good enough?
- Do I know what I’m doing?
Just believe that it will happen. Start with faith and watch the pieces fall into place.